US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility at Abu Dhabi Airport

The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility-Terminal 3

The United States Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility at Terminal 3 in Abu Dhabi Airport is a purpose-built facility that allows U.S. bound passengers to undertake all immigration, customs and agriculture inspections in Abu Dhabi prior to departure.

Abu Dhabi Airport is one of only a handful of airports outside North America that offer the CBP facility. Having cleared CBP, guests can check-through their baggage to their final destination in the United States. On reaching the U.S., guests will be treated as domestic arrivals, which allows for faster processing at their arrival airport.

Etihad Airways operates flights to three destinations in the U.S. - New York (EY101 only), Chicago (EY151) Washington (EY131) and  Los Angeles* ( EY171). Guests flying to above destinations in the U.S. will use the CBP facility at Abu Dhabi Airport.

Please note: This service is not available for the Etihad Airways flight number EY103 to New York (JFK).
* Los Angeles flights from 1 June 2014.

Overview of requirements

If you are travelling to the U.S.A. under the Visa Waiver Programme (VWP) you must:

  1. Apply for authorisation to travel under the VWP using the U.S. Department of Homeland Security ESTA website no less than 72 hours prior to travel.
  2. Add API (Advance Passenger Information) your booking up to 1 hour in advance of the first flight on your itinerary.
  3. Know the restricted and prohibited merchandise you can bring to the U.S.
  4. Hold an individual machine readable passport and a confirmed return or onward ticket (or e-ticket) for departure from the United States within 90 days.
  5. Complete relevant CBP Customs Declaration form at Abu Dhabi International Airport on the day of departure.

If you are travelling to the U.S.A. with a valid visa you must:

  1. Know the required documents for your trip.  
  2. Know the restricted and prohibited merchandise you can bring to the U.S.
  3. Complete relevant CBP Customs Declaration form at Abu Dhabi International Airport on the day of departure.

Service highlights

Department of Homeland Security 'U.S. Visit' Program

Since January 5th, 2004, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has been implementing the 'U.S. Visit Program'.

This program applies to all visitors. It does not apply to U.S. citizens or Legal Residents. U.S. Customs and Border Protection Officers will use an inkless fingerprint scanner to automatically read the fingerprints of these visitors. The Customs and Border Protection officer will also take a digital photograph. This biographic and fingerprint data will be used to verify the identity of the visitor. For additional information visit www.dhs.gov/us-visit

U.S. Immigration – Terminal 3 (T3) Abu Dhabi International Airport

Select flights to the U.S. must pre-clear U.S. Customs and Immigration in Terminal 3 (Abu Dhabi) before departure.

*Washington DC EY 131 – from the 24th of January 2014

Please review the U.S. CBP pre clearance requirements  before arriving at the airport.

After check-in or arrival in Abu Dhabi International Airport, guests on these flights should follow the airport signage for the U.S. Preclearance facility. The entrance to the U.S. Preclearance facility is adjacent to gates 58-61. Please proceed to the facility not later than 90-minutes before Departure.

A gate number will be advised on the Flight Information Display screens on exiting the Preclearance area.

Duty free goods including cigarettes and alcohol cannot be sold on-board flights which preclear U.S. Customs and Immigration in Abu Dhabi. Do not buy Duty free liquor or perfumes in excess of 100ml.

Liquids, aerosols and gels, (LAGS) in limited quantities, are safe to bring aboard an aircraft. Each traveller is allowed one bag in order to limit the total volume of liquids, aerosols and gels. Consolidating products into one bag and X-raying them separately from the carry-on bag enables security officers to quickly clear all items.

3-1-1 for carry-ons = 3.4 ounce (100ml) bottle or less (by volume); 1 quart-sized, clear, plastic, zip-top bag; 1 bag per passenger placed in screening bin. One-quart bag per person limits the total liquid volume each traveller can bring. 3.4 ounce (100ml) container size is a security measure. Be prepared. Each time TSA searches a carry-on it slows down the line. Practicing 3-1-1 will ensure a faster and easier checkpoint experience.

Declare larger liquids. Medications, baby formula and food, and breast milk are allowed in reasonable quantities exceeding three ounces and are not required to be in the zip-top bag. Declare these items for inspection at the checkpoint. Officers may need to open these items to conduct additional screening.

This means that liquor and perfumes bought at Duty Free are not allowed through a TSA check, even if they are in a STEBs bag (Secure Tamper-Evident Bag).

Check-in for all flights to the U.S. will close 120 minutes before departure for guests who are commencing their journey in  Abu Dhabi.

Customs Declaration Forms will be available at Etihad Airways check-in counters and onboard flights. Guests joining from other destinations will also be able to get the forms at Abu Dhabi check-in counter.